The Things I Don't Say

I have a nasty tendency to have expectations of people. I expect them to behave in a particular way, to do certain (polite, gracious) things, to be companionable and well behaved, to eat appropriately.

I expect people to "make nice". The problem is that this expects them to have the same values as I do. To place the same premium on important things that I do. And people are different. So, we can choose our friends, but not always our church family, our neighbours, our work colleagues, everyone we volunteer with, and most certainly not our family.

Sometimes we have to interact with people we wouldn't choose as friends. They may be rude, thoughtless, inconsiderate, or some combination of all 3, but I don't say anything. I grit my teeth, I may choose to limit my interaction with them, I may not want to be with them, I may even avoid them, but I don't tell them what I think of them.

I won't tell these people what I think of them. There's really no point. It would hurt them, they won't change their behaviour. In fact, I doubt that they are even aware that they caused offence, or that we see them out of duty only.

My mother had a rule, "Is it nice, is it true, and last but not least, does it need to be said?" And it's a good rule. So, while it might be true, and you might even argue that it would be nice to tell them how revolting I find their behaviour.

Ann had an interesting post on this - it was awfully different circumstances, but I wonder: when is it ok to blog about something that you wouldn't say to someone. Because talking about the issue helps release pressure, gives me a better perspective. Talking to the person involved; however, doesn't get us anywhere. Other than maybe starting family arguments.

So, I wonder. Is the best rule to always not say in a blog what I wouldn't say in person?